US weekly jobless claims fall for the first time in a month

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fewer Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week following three straight increases economists blamed on the surge in cases of the omicron variant of COVID-19.

The Labor Department reported Thursday that jobless claims fell by 30,000 to 260,000 last week, slightly less than the 265,000 analysts were expecting.

The four-week average of claims, which compensates for weekly volatility, rose by 15,000 to 247,000.

Altogether, nearly 1.7 million people were collecting jobless aid the week that ended Jan. 15, a nominal increase of 51,000 from the previous week.

Categories: National News